Apparently, I Look Like a Man

Or, so one of the boys said this week at work when I gave them a chance to vent their frustrations with the staff and program in a healthy way — by writing it out.  I encouraged them to curse me out if that’s what they wanted, that they wouldn’t get in trouble for it, and that I would shred the papers in front of them so they wouldn’t be seen by anyone else.  Some of them really took advantage of it, some said they didn’t have any frustrations to vent (this was rare), and one wrote only “haha.”

At any rate, I was told that I look like a man, that I need to GET a man, that I’m a piece of shit and one kid actually called me (out loud) both a “white-ass mother f**ker” and a “bitch.”  These last two statements were made at separate times and both were overheard by people above me — and that did not go over well at all for the boy.  One of the guys thought I was going to be terribly offended and shouldn’t read his note at all, and I reminded him that if my self-esteem were so pitiful as to be toppled by a bunch of 16-year-old boys, I wouldn’t be working this job.

This same guy, about 20 minutes after the exercise, said, “That’s a really good coping skill!”  I laughed and said, “What the heck do you think I write in my journals?!”  The boys nearby found this highly entertaining and have been begging to see my journal ever since.  I’m just waiting for the day that one of them yanks it off me and discovers that most of my cursing is directed to myself, not others, and usually is some variation of “I am so f**king FAT!”

And on that note — eating at work this week has been infinitely better.  Someone (I’m not sure who) told the “moms” in the kitchen that I don’t eat meat, and so every meal, there has been a fish patty or veggie burger awaiting me.  Occasionally, there is something that is technically “vegetarian” that I just don’t care for, and so I still do find myself eating protein bars and fruit a lot, but I actually had full meals this week, which is a huge improvement.

Other huge improvements/milestones:  despite eating a full three meals a day, I am STILL eating a snack in the morning while the guys are in school.  I think I’ve only skipped it once, and that was a morning where I had something like, 12 starches for breakfast.  Also, I voluntarily drank TWO boosts this week and the guys got a real kick out of shouting “chug! chug! chug! chug!” as I downed one at dinner in 5 seconds flat.  (Those things are disgusting.  I cannot delicately sip one or I’ll never finish it.)

Even with all these attempts to eat well and fuel myself properly while at this new job, I am still losing weight.  It’s not a huge amount, but the scale definitely goes down a bit every time I am home on time off, and my pants are a little looser.  In addition, I have dropped below my residential discharge weight, which is….interesting.  I always thought the weight I discharged from residential at was way too high, but if I were to look at it logically and analytically, I know that it’s fairly close to my set point (if not a bit below).  So dropping below that weight puts me fairly close to the danger zone (somewhere around a BMI of 20.5) where my brain shifts over into full-blown eating disorder and I sort of lose control of the whole thing.

I see my dietician in my time off next week, so this is certainly a conversation I’ll be having with her.  I am afraid to add too much more to my diet, simply because I don’t want to GAIN weight while at this job, either.  And because I can only weigh myself once a week, it makes me nervous to eat a lot for a week and then come home only to find I’ve gained X pounds, which would make my two days off pretty miserable and would likely send me into a tailspin of restricting.

In the meantime, until I see my dietician next week, I commit to the following:

  • Drinking at least 2 boosts over the next 5 days
  • Eating a snack every day, whether I want it or not
  • Keeping a food journal to bring to my dietician
  • Taking an honest look at my intake and whether or not it’s enough
How about you, friends?  Are you doing well?  Are you enjoying my tales from the wilderness and working with teenaged boys?  I wish I had more time to write when at the camp — maybe I can start handwriting blogs so you guys get more than one update a week, with more exciting content than what I ate.
Oh, and in case you were wondering — I don’t look like a man.  Proof here.
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10 thoughts on “Apparently, I Look Like a Man

  1. When I worked at a home for abused kids, I was called things like that so often I barely even noticed! :P It sounds like you work really well with the boys (maybe your manliness is intimidating, hah). What an amazing experience!

    I’m glad the food situation is working out a bit better than you expected. Good luck with your goals! :)

    • I’m definitely loving the job – I’ve had the opportunity to have really good conversation with a couple of the guys, and I feel like I might be getting through. Even with the others, it’s easy to just let the insults roll off my back and laugh at them for being so silly. I mean, if you really want to offend me, insult my intellect, not my haircut. :)

  2. I bet they KNOW how lucky they are to have you. It’s always super cute when kids realize that you are teaching them something that is actually useful, even if they were reluctant when they started doing it. I’m proud of you for everything you are doing to keep yourself healthy. Please don’t lose any more weight, okay?! I want you healthy and happy…what a great photo, by the way. You’re so pretty when you’re happy!

    • (As soon as I typed that I realized it sounded mean. It was supposed to be a compliment! I hope you take it as that. I have had a long day and am not making a whole lot of sense! Anyway, I just meant that the joy is evident on your face!)

      • It wasn’t until your second comment that I realized I could have twisted that first comment into some sort of “OH, so I’m UGLY when I’m unhappy?!” sort of thing. I definitely accepted it as the compliment you intended it as. I think I look pretty decent in the photo, actually (which is rare), except for the fact that my boobs are like, RIGHT THERE.

        Seriously — no way I could be mistaken for a man.

  3. I’m not sure I understand. I’ve been praying for you to eat; that they will serve foods that you can eat. It looks like that is happened. But I guess I assumed if you were eating, you would be maintaining and not losing? Why are you losing? Too much activity? Still not enough calories?

    • Both, I think. Even on the lazy days, I’m much more active here than I was at my last job. And even with foods I can eat, I still probably skimp on the portions a bit.
      I’m keeping a food journal this week to bring to my dietician, so maybe that will answer some questions.

  4. I love the humor with which you deal with the kids ;) It makes things go so much smoother I think!

    And I am so glad your eating is going well at the new job :) I know it has got to be hard, and increasing is scary, but you can do it. It is for your best interest, and I know you will do what you need to do <3

    Have a great weekend!

    Scott

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